Dinner, Lunch, Uncategorized

Mac & Cheese Haul

Sometimes you don’t want to make something from scratch. Macaroni and cheese is one of those dishes that is typically made from scratch and has a distinct homemade taste. This distinct taste of this classic dish can be made dairy-free without skimping on the deliciousness.  It doesn’t have to be one or the other. In this case, you can have both. Justifiable if you want to cheat a little bit, but not with the flavor or risk of eating something that tastes horrible. 

Here are the various “not-from-scratch” dairy-free Mac & Cheese options that exist and meet the Allergic Halal Foodie standards:

Daiya Macaroni & Cheese. This is a great option because you don’t have to melt the cheese. This mac & cheese box includes the uncooked pasta and cheese sauce packet. The cheese sauce is extremely cheesy, eliminating the work of adding dairy-free butter, dairy-free milk, and any other extra cooking steps. Just boil the pasta and add the cheese sauce and you’re done! You do have the option to use their elbow pasta included or swap it out for your own preferred pasta shape. Decisions, decisions…

Earth Balance Macaroni & Cheese is a nice choice for boxed mac and cheese. You can use their dairy-free butter, too, for the recipe.

Amy’s Frozen Macaroni & Cheese is great because all you need is a microwave and patience of about five minutes. It makes it to the top of the list because of pure convenience.  They also use Daiya cheese, which is a plus and adds to the familiar great taste. The extra special bonus with frozen dairy-free mac and cheese is that you can quickly turn it into baked dairy-free mac & cheese by putting it into the oven in an oven safe dish. Dare to sprinkle some bread crumbs on top beforehand and you might be amazed with the quality results.

Annie’s Macaroni & Cheese is a product in their line of products that is vegan and dairy-free. It comes with an already cheesy sauce included with the uncooked pasta. This line includes a gluten free option, too. 

For some variety you can cook some halal ground beef with tomatoes or in a marinara sauce and add it to your boxed dairy-free mac and cheese of choice. It will become your beef and cheesy mac, beeferoni, mac and cheese with beef, beef chili mac and cheese without the beans, etc (or whatever is your preferred name for the dish). It all adds up to tasty halal food for the allergic foodie.

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Dinner, Lunch, Uncategorized

Eid ul Adha Lamb Leftovers

Eid ul Adha is synonomous with several things, but it is most notably associated with lamb. Eid ul Adha literally translates into the celebration of the sacrifice (referring to the sacrifice that Ibrahim a.s. almost made with his son). If you have celebrated this holiday, you will have purchased a whole halal lamb that was slaughtered the day of Eid. Presumably you have given a third of the lamb meat to the needy, a third of the lamb meat for friends and extended family, and the keep the remaining third of the lamb meat for yourself. Wherever you get your 1/3 lamb, that portion is still a nice amount of lamb. 

Lamb meat not going away anytime soon? Want to diversify the menu while not quickly getting tired lamb? Here are some lamb dishes (dairy-free, nut-free, egg-free, seafood-free) to add to your menu while your lamb supply is high:

Lamb and chickpea curry – This recipe uses dairy-free coconut milk. 

Dibi sogo – This simple lamb meat and onions meal is without the yogurt marinade and can be paired with anything or eaten alone.

Lamb chops ratatouille – This classic lamb chop recipe is made to look like an expensive restaurant style meal at home.

Rosemary and garlic lamb shoulder with mashed vegetables  – Make sure to check out how to make dairy-free mashed veggies. 

Parsi salli boti – This recipe doesn’t skimp on the variety of spices and the nice surprise is the dried apricot!

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Snacks, Sweets, Uncategorized

Chocolate Rice Crispy Treat

What happens when you mix chocolate rice cereal, dairy-free and allergen-free butter, and halal marshmallow? You get a delectable classic rice crispy treat.

Ingredients:

  1. Chocolate rice cereal (I chose this brown rice cereal with less guilt)
  2. Halal and allergen free marshmallows (I usually use either one of those two brands) 
  3. Dairy-free and allergen-free butter

Recipe:  

Melt allergen-free butter and marshmallows (in a pot on the stove or microwave). Pour chocolate rice cereal into the melted marshmallows. Pat down and shape with a silicone spatula. Cool in fridge. Eat and enjoy!

**I chose to shape these treats in a casserole dish and then I cut them into squares. I also didn’t list the quantity of ingredients used because you can tailor this simple recipe to your taste. I used less rice cereal than marshmallows because I never had halal marshmallows when I was a young girl. I really don’t need to explain how I subconsciously try to make up for lost times…**

These were my results.

  

You can see the excess of white marshmallows. If this isn’t your desired result, just add more chocolate rice cereal to the melted mixture before the batch hardens and before placing in the fridge.

 

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Recently Discovered

DIY Vegan Cheddar Cheese

What do you do when you have a food craving and don’t have that food item in your house or a crucial ingredient is missing? You do-it-yourself (make-it-yourself in this case)! I wanted to make cheesy Mac, but didn’t have the Daiya cheddar cheese in the fridge nor did I want to drive to the grocery store. Most recipes for homemade vegan cheese require cashews or some other nut. Since nuts are an absolute life threat in my household, I had to find an alternative. So, I just winged it and came up with this very tasty cheddar cheese. I wasn’t particular with the measuring and ended up having a great amount leftover, so I also ate some of this homemade cheese with quinoa tortilla chips afterwards. Delicious!

Ingredients:

  1. Carrots (6 peeled and boiled baby carrots)
  2. Potatoes (2 peeled and boiled)
  3. Nutritional yeast (1 cup)
  4. Salt (1/4 tsp)
  5. Garlic (1 clove or 1 tsp of garlic powder)
  6. Water (1 cup)

I threw all ingredients into my high speed blender and this is the end product.   

  

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Uncategorized

Vegan Cheddar cheese

There a few vegan cheese brands that exist. Daiya just happens to be one of my favorite brands.  I also think this particular brand is available in a variety of stores, rather than solely at the natural foods stores. Daiya makes block style cheddar cheese, shredded style cheddar cheese, and sliced cheddar cheese.  I use this block style if I want to cut shapes or make a fun cheese and cracker plate for the kids. Either style of Daiya’s cheddar cheese melts nicely and tastes great for that dairy and nut free cheddar cheese craving. 

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Recently Discovered

Whipped Cream

I recently discovered dairy-free whipped cream! Rice whipped cream (for those gluten-free or soy-free folks) or soy whipped cream. Whether it is for your hot chocolate or to top off your desserts, it is vegan and halal so indulge yourself! 

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Snacks, Sweets

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

I love oatmeal raisin cookies, especially with a sandwich, or with a glass of cold milk, or with a cup of hot chocolate, or as an anytime of the day snack. I am particularly a fan of the chewy, soft oatmeal raisin cookie without nuts. I have mostly gobbled down oatmeal cookies that have eggs and/or dairy butter as an ingredient.  I have tasted a few vegan oatmeal raisin cookies, but those usually contained nuts or weren’t as tasty nor chewy.  I found the best vegan oatmeal raisin cookie and it is located at Trader Joe’s.  Bravo to Trader Joe’s for accurately naming this cookie Chewy, chunky oatmeal raisin cookie. It is a perfect title. Notice how they put vegan inconspicuously on the label, too? It is probably because vegan foods typically have the reputation of not being as delicious as its non-vegan counterpart. 

The additional good news is that the bag contains a very generous amount of cookies for a very low price. Check out the pictures. And yes, the bag is empty less than 24hours after purchase. I really love oatmeal raisin cookies…

  

 

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